HAL 2019 World – Days 27-28 Mo’orea and Bora Bora, French Polynesia

February 27, 2019 Paul Groves

We left Papeete at 4:30 in the morning for a short couple of hours trip to Mo’orea.  Unfortunately the storms were still in the area causing large ocean swells and the Captain decided to bypass Mo’orea and go on to Bora Bora.  Since Mo’orea has no natural or man made breakwater, it would have been unsafe to use the Tenders to visit the island.  From the looks of it (on the internet), Mo’orea would have been beautiful.


We sailed into the lagoon at Bora Bora around 7:00 pm and the Tenders began taking some passengers to shore if they wished. Not much was open so it was a quick trip back to the ship for them.

A quick note…Bora Bora is an extinct volcano with coral reefs encircling it which creates the lagoon.  The main island is sinking causing the coral reefs to rise.  After thousands of more years there will be no more island.  All that will be left behind are the coral reefs and an atoll will have formed.

The next morning the sun was out and it turned into a beautiful day.  Our excursion today was a trip around the island (were you surprised?).  Our vehicle was not an air conditioned bus but a truck whose bed had been converted with seats and a rooftop.

Again the day was filled with some beautiful scenery.  

When we came into the lagoon last night we saw one of the famous over the water bungalow resorts.  To our surprise we found out there’s not just one resort but 5 of them. Also, they are not built on the main island but on the outlying reefs.  If you’re interested in staying a night, prices start at around $1,000/night.

Along the way our guide pointed out small holes in the ground on the shoreline.  These are crab holes.  We stopped and he threw flowers on the ground amongst the holes.  In a few seconds the crabs began crawling out of their holes, grabbing onto the flowers, and pulling them down into their holes! A couple of the crabs fought with each other over the same flower.

We also visited the only sandy beach on the island.  It’s not very long but the waters were crystal clear.  A local band was playing music while we were there.  We would have loved to stay but we needed to keep moving.

At one of our stops the shop owners showed us how they decorate some of their local cloth.  They start by tie-dying some cotton cloth.  Then they stretch it out on a table to dry and cover it with various animal shaped pieces of linoleum. After a few hours the cloth has dried and when you remove the pieces of linoleum, the area under the linoleum is pale.  The linoleum absorbed some of the color underneath it!  They also demonstrated how to wear the cloth using some of the passengers as models.

Our last stop was at the bar/restaurant called “Bloody Mary’s”.  It’s by frequented by a lot of Celebrities so you’ll never know who you might find there.  It’s also expensive.  Bloody Mary’s are $18.00 apiece!  We only had time for one before we returned to the ship.  

Next stop, the Kingdom of Tonga!